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Kushanku

  

   Kshank (Kskun or Kwang Shang Fu) was the name of a Chinese martial arts expert, coming in 1756 as a ambassador of the Chinese Ming-Emperor to Okinawa. At that time he was yet a well known master of the Quanfa and a respectable person.

     Here is a short story of the first meeting of  Kushanku and the young Sakugawa, teacher of Matsumura:  One day, when he was 23 years old, the young Sakugawa decided to visit Nakashima-Yukaku, which was famous for its gay quarters. While crossing a bridge near the Izumizaki inlet, he noticed an elegantly dressed Chinese fellow standing by the edge of the river, watching the reflection of the moon on the water. A sudden mischievous impulse came over Sakugawa. He wanted to push the stranger into the river as a prank. He stealthily crept towards the stranger and suddenly gave a strong push. The Chinese stranger spoke the word, "Danger!" in strongly accented Okinawan, turned and grabbed Sakugawa by the hand in an iron grip.

     "Now why did you do that?" the stranger asked. "Do you realize your prank could have resulted in some danger? What if I were some weakling unable to cope with this situation? You are very powerful and you should not play like this. The Okinawan people have been very kind to me and I will overlook this, but refrain from such pranks in the future."


     Sakugawa was so ashamed he did not know what to say. At this moment a young man approached them and gave a jug of sake to the Chinese stranger. Turning to Sakugawa, the young man asked, "Are you not Sakugawa? I was not sure whether I had recognized you. What are you doing here?"
"Do you know him?" the Chinese gentleman asked the young man, pointing to Sakugawa.
"Yes," the young man said, "He is a well-known local karate student who shows great promise."
 

     The Chinese gentleman peered intently at Sakugawa. "If you ever come to Kume-rn~ra, ask for Kushanku and I will teach you not only the how, but also the why, of the martial arts." And pointing to the young man who had brought him the jug, he said, "He is Kitani-Yara, a student of mine who is helping me during my stay in this country."


     Overwhelmed with emotion at this stroke of luck, Sakugawa could hardly wait to get back to his sensei and tell him of this account. When he related his story, Takahara was also overjoyed and said, "Go to Kushanku and learn what you can. He is the most skillful of all the martial artists who have ever come from China. Fortune is smiling on you. When Kushanku returns to China, you are welcome to come back to this house. Now Hurry!"

* from http://www.jukengo.de/kata/kushanku/kanku_eng.htm

 

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